The other morning I woke up fully intending to just have some baguette with butter and jam for breakfast. Then I spied the apricots I bought at a farmstand sitting on the counter. My intention was to make preserves with them the night before, only to realize I was running low on sugar. I know, that sounds hard to believe, but all my summer vacationing has left my home pantry in need of restocking.
Makes a scant 1 cup / 95 grams
1/4 cup / 26 grams ground cardamom
1/4 cup / 34 grams ground cinnamon
1/4 cup / 18 grams ground ginger
1 tablespoon / 9 grams ground cloves
1 whole nutmeg, freshly grated
1 tablespoon / 8 grams freshly ground black pepper
Add all of the ingredients to a small bowl. Whisk well to combine. Transfer to a jar with a tight-fitting lid. Store in a cool dry place for up to two months. Shake well before using.
Finding a way to navigate life in these ever-changing times can be paralyzing. The advent of technology and explosion of 24/7 media means we have more information at our disposal than we can ever really hope to digest.
A simple trip to the supermarket requires the stealth research of a journalist, armed with credible sources.
But what is credible in this day and age, since news—be it in print, online or television is not objective? You know where someone stands immediately whether they watch Fox News or CNN, reads the New York Post or New York Times.
The best advice I can offer is to take a moment and consider the effect our collective purchasing power has on what makes it to supermarket shelves. Perhaps if we truly pondered the big picture—the world beyond our borders, the planet we are leaving to our children, then there would be only one real convenient way of eating.
I find my curiosity piqued as my eyes wander over the ingredients strewn across the conveyor belt just ahead of my own items. Is it fair to cast judgement based solely on one’s grocery purchases? I know deep down the answer is no. Food is a complicated ingredient in all of our lives. The decision of what to buy is often compromised by budget and time available.
I sometimes question if I’m over-thinking my own approach to feeding my family. Then as I peruse labels, I realize cooking from scratch is the only way I can peacefully co-exist with the planet.
This article from NPR’s Public Radio Kitchen is a glimpse of what is inherently wrong with today’s food system. Then I read this piece in the New York Time’s and it reminded me I’m not alone in my struggles with decisions when it comes to politics of the plate. I find myself raising many of the same questions as Yoon does in her article.
As those moments creep into my daily life, I stop myself and take a long, deep breath. Rather than feel overcome with helplessness, I retreat to the kitchen and go on with life the only way I know how.
Purists may want to take a seat. I’ve done a lot of tampering with this seemingly classic Italian dish.
Some of the changes were from necessity, and others pure whim. I’ve made a pork version of this a few times, the sweetness of the marsala wine being a natural compliment to the flavors of the pork from Flying Pigs Farm. Yes, you read correctly—I used marsala wine in this bolognese sauce, casting aside the requisite red wine.
It’s just about mid-January, and while I’m not exactly in a root vegetable rutt yet, I couldn’t help think about all the summer salads that are months away for us farmers’ market shoppers here in the northeast. I had no intention of even making a salad, but after spying some blood oranges at the little market I inhabit a few times a week, I soon found myself picking up some organic baby arugula too.
I must confess, until two weeks ago, I really never knew the difference between muesli and oatmeal. Crazy, yes, but I’m also new to the oatmeal game. When I was a little girl, I’d beg my nana for oatmeal each morning because my older sister loved it. Then I’d find myself staring at a bowl of mush, and suddenly realized I preferred food that required teeth. Something with texture that I could actually enjoy.
Years ago—who am I kidding, it was more than a decade, I had my first sip of freshmade almond milk. It was while I was touring the Natural Gourmet Cookery school, now known as the Natural Gourmet Institute. While tuition costs superceded my dreams of attending, that almond milk has haunted me to this day.